Correction: So, I now realize that the route we took to the Okanagan was on the Coquihalla Highway and not the Trans-Canada Highway. Back when I wrote this post I clearly had prairie blood running through me. Now with a little West Coast in me, I know my BC Highways a bit better. 🙂
So I’m facing one of my fears this weekend.
Three years ago, we moved to BC. Filled with excitement, Armando and I drove our cars through the majestic Canadian Rockies from Calgary to Vancouver on the Trans-Canada Highway. The views were beautiful, yet terrifying. Narrow, winding roads cut along the sides of the mountains. Single lanes. Oncoming traffic in those few areas that still lacked a double-lane highway.
I had my Ford Focus while Armando drove his Mini Cooper. The curvy road made me nervous, as I struggled to drive fast enough to reach the speed limit. There were many times that I caused a backlog of traffic and Armando supported my nervousness as he slowed down to stay with me, in spite of being embarrassed to be seen driving his Mini Cooper so slow.
I remember times when my hands were so sweaty with nervousness that I could barely hold the steering wheel without them slipping of the leather. I remember talking to myself to try and calm myself down because I could feel the panic brewing inside my chest and the tears of fear welling up inside my eyes. I don’t know where the fear came from. I had been on that road in the past and don’t remember feeling that anxiety.
When we finally arrived in Vancouver, the first thing that I said to Armando as we both got out of our cars was, “If you ever leave me, I am going to sell my car and take a flight back to Calgary because I will never drive that road again!”
The drive seemed to have a traumatic impact on me because for the first year in Vancouver, driving on curvy roads in the city, over bridges or down narrow roads made me very nervous. I believe my fear may be partially due to the roads being wider and straighter on the prairies and that I wasn’t used to driving on the narrow, curvy roads of the Rocky Mountains. The fear still creeps up inside of me at times but has definitely improved over the 3 years of being here.
But I have never returned to the Trans-Canada Highway…until now. This weekend, I am taking Armando on a birthday getaway weekend to the Okanagan. I am very excited for the weekend but am trying to keep my wits together about the drive. Armando wants to drug me so I sleep through it all. I think it will be a good time to start practising my “Zen”.
Here’s to facing our fears. Sitting by a pool with a glass of BC wine and my wonderful husband is my motivation. I’ll let you know how it goes…and hopefully I won’t have to catch a flight home. To a great long weekend…Cheers!